|Streets of Arad|
|Sister missionaries in our district|
|Romanian man enjoying the afternoon|
First of all, our investigator with a baptismal date is no longer... after texting us multiple times if we wanted to join him in drinking Jack Daniels and getting some Thai women, we decided he is not ready. What a bummer! I am glad that he wants to share with us, but He is clearly drunk a lot and not ready to make the big sacrifices that will help him get to know His Savior better. That's ok! I still love him and pray that some day he will be ready. It is important to remember that the Lord's time is different than ours! I have learned to love this. I am so glad that I can be a missionary and witness His timing and plan for the people in Romania.
|Alisia drew a portrait of me!!!|
On the flip side, we have been meeting with a really special 14-year old ever since I have gotten to Arad. He is the grandson of some members here but has not been baptized. I hit it off really well with him when I first got here but he hadn't shown much interest in the church. If there is something that I have learned since being a missionary in Romania, it is that sharing the gospel is so much easier after becoming someones friend. That is really key, especially in Romania. People are so closed off, but once you get to know some one, and become friends, they will be your friend for life. The pivotal point of the relationship is when they ask for your Facebook... haha!
|Manu loving his Kendama sticker that Tyler sent him|
So we have done many fun things with this boy, Manu, and have really gotten to know him. He was also very close to Elder Day, he was basically Manu's mentor and best friend! It was very hard for him to hear about Elder Day's passing. I really admired Elder Day's vision and love for Manu. He saw potential in him that maybe was hard to see at first glance. I noticed how looking in the inside of somebody- into who they really are, is how we must interact with them. This is essentially looking through the eye's of God, because He see's our true potential.
|New sign at the church|
Elder Day always believed in Manu, and he told me that he was confident that one day, Manu would recognize that He needs the gospel in His life. Well, we met with Manu and had a fun time playing sting pong, watching Tyler's YouTube videos, and hanging out like any bros would. Towards the end, he asked us why he hasn't been able to feel the spirit before. Wow! This was a really good question! We talked about it for a second but had to catch a taxi. In the taxi, Elder Wilstead leaned over to Manu and was going to explain his question a little deeper. Manu replied-let's meet up another time so you can explain it better! Hallelujah!!! Manu has a new desire to feel the spirit. And we are going to help him feel the love that God has for him- that Elder Day has for him, by helping him see his potential through God's plan for him and for all of us. What a little miracle! I testify that having a true friendship with someone makes sharing the gospel natural- they will be interested because they see the difference of our countenance!
|Traian and Maria... A wonderful couple!|
A similar story with a couple that we tracked into the first week of the transfer- Traian and Maria. They are in their 70's and ever so faithful. It is wonderful to see truly faithful people here, who love God and have a real relationship with him. The first time we went to their house we were fed liverwurst and this time, we expected the same thing... LUCKILY we were served surprisingly yummy meatballs with not so yummy (but bearable) cold mashed potatoes. But that's not the important part- the important part is that we strengthened our relationship with them. We got to know what they hold most dear in life, we shared scriptures with one another, and were uplifted. Ya, maybe we didn't teach a run of the mill "lesson" but we were able to exchange truths, and help them see what we Mormon's are all about- that we aren't actually weird! Traian invited us to his farm so we are going to go with him this .
|Spreadin the Kendama love in Romania!|
|Remember this red door from an earlier picture when I arrive in Arad?|
As we continue to be their friends, the gospel will come up, and we will have the opportunity to share these essential truths with them. If they are ready to expand their vision of the plan of our Heavenly Father for us, then that time will come. I have confidence in the Lord's timing and all I can do is continue to love them and share what I hold most dear to my heart.
|Kabob House - we eat here way too much|
|Our favorite car|
Another cool thing is that they commented that my Romanian is WAY better than when I last saw them... dang I guess I have been improving! During our meeting with them, I truly felt gifted with the Gift of Tongues. My words were just flowing out of my mouth and I could understand them pretty dang well. Man I am so thankful for the help of God in this work! He is truly watching over me, and everyone!
|Timisoara Train Station|
Thank you to everyone who has sent me letters, emails, packages, etc. I feel way too spoiled but your words of encouragement have gotten me through some very rough times!
The Gospel is REAL. Our Savior LIVES. Joseph Smith, through the power and authority of God RESTORED the church and TRANSLATED the Book of Mormon. Let this knowledge guide us every single day! Make this a part of who you are and people will notice your joy.
Package from home!!!!!!!
|I literally teared up when I opened the package! All Cool Runnings themed. I was SO pumped!|
|I can't even believe this shirt!!!!|
|Literally Erv Blitzen's scarf!|